Things to do in Oludeniz
Oludeniz is arguably Turkey's most popular beach. British tourists discovered the calm, beautiful lagoon and stretch of white sand in the 1980s, and its popularity grew from there: it's hardly surprising this gorgeous coastal spot fills up with tourists each year, spilling out of their Fethiye villas and down to the sand.
Oludeniz Beach is near the resort of Fethiye, in the southwest of Turkey on its Turquoise Coast. The coast gets its name from the colour of the sea that laps the shores of this region. If you're in need of Oludeniz things to do, there's a wealth of activities on and around the popular beach.
1 Indulge in some beach sports
Parasailing, jet skiing, kite boarding: water sports of all kinds are some of the best Oludeniz things to do. There are a number of companies and kiosks at the beach just waiting to rent you a paddle board or banana boat ride, or set you up with a waterskiing lesson. Of course, if your idea of holiday fun is chilling out, you can simply laze on the white sands.
2 Head to nearby Fethiye
When you tire of the beach, head to nearby Fethiye. Hit the old town, Paspatur, where you can see the old buildings and get a feel for how life was in the past. You can also shop in the shade and escape the summer heat in the old town. The fish market is a popular haunt: buy your favourite seafood and have it cooked for you while you wait.
Read more: Why we LOVE Fethiye
3 Look into the area's Lycian past
Look up at the hillside and you will be able to see the Lycian rock tombs. If it isn't too hot, you could even hike up to see the mysterious looking stone structures: the climb isn’t too steep, and the tombs are is impressive. The most famous one is the huge tomb of Amyntas, the son of Hermapias, which was hewn from the rock in the 4th century BC.
4 Take to the water on a boat trip
Head out on a boat trip to the Sunday market at Gocek. Shop for souvenirs, cheap clothing, and food such as Turkish delight [lokum] and different types of halva and a whole host of other temptingly cheap items. Remember that Turkey is famous for its leather goods, as well as silk and cotton items.
There are other boat trips to go on too, such as the 12 Islands trip or the Blue Bays trip. On some trips a traditional Turkish lunch is included in the price. There’s also the Fethiye to Çalıs water taxi service which operates in the summer months. Head out at sunset for some spectacular sunset photos. The trip takes about 40 minutes. If you are interested in all things archaeological, go on a boat trip to Gemiler island, where you can see the ruins of several churches which date from between the 4th and 6th centuries.
5 Jump off a cliff
Babadag is the highest mountain close to Oludeniz, and you can paraglide from its peak right down to the beach. You can either hike up to the top or take a cable car. If you're not feeling adventurous, you can admire the panoramic view from the top while having a cooling drink, or a Turkish coffee. In winter you can ski down the mountain. There is a road up the mountain, but it’s not for the faint-hearted.
6. Surround yourself with nature at Butterfly Valley
At beautiful Butterfly Valley, you will find many species flora and fauna. In summer the small bar and restaurant are open, and you can get a boat there. You can camp there and use it as a base for hiking.
7 Hike the Lycian Way
Walk to the traditional village of Faralya, or even further. The Lycian way is a 29-day hike, but you can stop off at any point on the route. The Lycians still remain something of a mystery as their civilisation is not as well-documented as that of the Greeks. They are thought to come from this Anatolian area, and it's is interesting to note that Lycia was the last region in this Anatolian area to be swallowed up by the Roman Empire.
Faralya has good honey and olives and is a great place to enjoy a meal at one of the tavernas while you are there. The food, as elsewhere in Turkey is lovingly prepared using mainly local ingredients. There are many photo opportunities, so be sure to take your camera. There are several tombs located at the end of the village which you can explore. Stroll around the area surrounding Faralya and see what else you can find of interest.
Read more: Hiking the ancient Lycian Way
8 Head further afield
If you grow weary of the beach, check out a few day trips.
- Pamukkale [Cotton Castle], three hours north of Fethiye. The famous thermal springs have thermal water cascading down the mountain, forming pools in which you can bathe. Pamukkale is a UNESCO World Heritage Site which has been formed over millennia from the limestone that exudes from the waters. Close to the springs is the ruined city of Hierapolis, which you can visit after your trip to the springs. Before you go check opening times. You may want to spend a night in one of the hotels in the village, some of which have thermal pools.
- Kas is a picturesque town with a well-preserved ancient amphitheatre and it also has a great beach
- Kaputas Beach, where you can go diving and snorkelling. The Lycian Way runs through the town.
- Antalya is another good city to visit. Be sure to go to Kaleici Old Town and see what you can find. Wandering around the old town transports you back to a bygone age. Theses places are just a few things to do when you visit Oludeniz.
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